According to several reviews, a significant part of the failure of many rural electrification programs has been due to the lack of participation of future users in the design decisions, and the overemphasis on technical and economic aspects. In this paper we develop an innovative proposal for assisting in the choice of the most appropriate alternative for the generation and distribution technology for rural electrification projects. This proposal is focused on the empowerment of the local population, characterizing the community and the selection process in a structured manner, considering their preferences, and selecting the alternative through consensus of the future users. The methodology is based on the joint application of participatory techniques and multi-criteria decision methods. The application of the methodology to a real case of a rural community in Rwanda shows that the alternative selected through consensus amongst the future users differs from the alternative proposed by the experts participating in the project, confirming the relevance of having users participate in the project decisions since the very first moment.
Registration date: 2018-04-08